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Taoyuan Airport Opens New Control Tower
Taiwan’s Taoyuan Airport unveiled its new control tower earlier this week in time for the airport’s 40th anniversary, representing an important milestone as the airport moves toward becoming a so-called “smart airport” of the future. According to Taiwan’s transportation minister, Chia-lung Lin, the new control tower will help boost the international airport’s flight handling capacity while also serving as a new landmark for the country’s gateway to the world.
Taoyuan Airport used to handle around 100 flights per day when it first opened in 1979, 40 years ago. Currently, the airport handles over 700 flights per day. The new tower not only helps the airport meet increasing passenger demand but being over 20 meters taller than the old control tower (65 meters tall), it also gives air traffic controllers a clearer view of the airport’s runways. The new tower can sit 11 controllers at one time, instead of four in the old structure.
Built at a cost of $41.6 million U.S. Dollars over three years, the new tower is equipped with state-of-the-art technology giving air traffic controllers a better and easier working environment for monitoring flight data. The tower also features a state-of-the-art 360-degree simulator room for training air traffic controllers.
According to Lin, the new control tower serves a “new national landmark” for the island nation, and highlighted that the tower’s design was inspired by another national landmark, the “Queen’s Head,” a geological rock formation in Yehliu Geopark in northeastern Taiwan.
Taoyuan Airport has already 268,000 flights taking off and landing at the airport as of mid-December 2019. The Taiwanese government has estimated that the number could reach 400,000 in 20 years.
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